Kate Miller-Marathon

Do you know anyone else who has seen more than one different artist over 75 times?

Andy Clark has now seen 3 artists over 75 times.

fan  /fan/  Noun: A person who has a strong interest in or admiration for a particular sport, art or entertainment form, or famous person.

The man may well be Kate Miller-Heidke’s biggest fan. He recently followed her halfway around the country.

Here’s his story.

By Andy Clark

Between 1980 and 2010 I saw U2 perform 79 times. In the 80’s I saw Welsh band, The Alarm 110 times. And now, just 7 years after seeing her perform for the first time at Women In Voice 2005,

I’ve seen Kate Miller-Heidke 79 times too.

My recent Kate Miller-Marathon started in Lismore. I even sold my ticket to the incomparable comedian Ross Noble to go to see Kate perform songs from her upcoming NIGHTFLIGHT album and her previous albums at Lismore’s Star Court Theatre.

Kate was joined on stage by her collaborator/guitarist/hubby, Keir Nuttall, and her long time friend, the angelic singer, Madeleine Paige. The 3 synch together like the legs of a Tripod and at times are as hilarious as the Comedy trio of the same name.  The opening song Fire and Iron is a delightful calming beautiful song, but the variety of Kate’s setlist is one of the reasons all the shows on her tour sold out within days of going on sale.

Old songs like Shoebox, Politics, Words and Space blend with the new songs seamlessly, despite the often massive contrast between the different styles of the songs Kate produces. Other new songs that are gentle and gorgeous like Fire and Iron are Tiger and Devil, whilst the absolute highlight of each recent Kate gig for me is the spinechilling story of a girl called SARAH who got lost at Livid 1997.

Nightflight, Humiliation and In The Dark are all awesome new songs on the setlist and Kate also performed brilliant acoustic intimate versions of Dreams/I Love You, Can’t Shake It and God’s Gift, plus the radio hits Caught in a Crowd and Last day on Earth.

From Lismore I flew to Melbourne (for the first time ever for a gig) for 3 nights at The Speigeltent and trips to The Espy at St Kilda and Victoria Markets plus Werribee Zoo and Park. The Speigeltent is a magical place for anyone to play. Despite shortened setlists, Kate’s gigs there enhanced the ambience of the venue and it was delightful to meet fans who until now had just been tiny photos on my Facebook. Talking of which, it was Kate Miller-Heidke who suggested that, at the age of 46, I should go onto MySpace and then at age 48 that I should switch to Facebook. Then in 2009 I videoed Kate’s Facebook Song at Brisbane’s HiFi Bar and after Keir added lyrics it went viral in USA, it intrigued Ben Folds interest in Kate and now has nearly 1.5 million views on You Tube. Are You F*cking Kidding Me? No I’m not and that is also the title of that song.

My most memorable moment from The Speigeltent was when Keir did something wrong and whilst they regrouped I shouted “He’s the Star” which caused the audience to laugh out loud to Kate’s slight dissatisfaction and so I quickly added “He’s the SECOND STAR”. Hopefully Kate and Keir will continue their trip from the Second Star to Utopia, Nirvana or Neverland and head straight on till morning. I think they are on course to become massive in 2012, but I have been thinking that for 7 years now and voting for them in triple j’s Hottest 100 annually, without success. Another massive song in waiting is Kate’s Southern Cross Tattoo, which talks about Hottest 100 Day being a ‘very special day’ when we ‘keep the VB cool” and “we’re gonna blow up the pool’.

Kate has covered many diverse songs, from Toxic by Britney and Little Water Song by Nick Cave (on triple j’s Like A Version).  Their current cover is Slim Shady by Eminem. This still amazes the crowd and if you like some controversial comments check out my video of this from Woodford 2010. Over 69,000 views to date and some of the best comments come from disgruntled Eminem devotees.

Home town gigs are always special and Kate’s Brisbane gigs were both amazing, but different. The Friday night seemed to be full of people coming from their work, with polite laughter and applause. On Saturday the audience reaction was sensational, with lots of whooping and outlandish hysterical chortling, like they’d all inhaled happy gas or a bottle of wine or two. I got permission from Kate and the Powerhouse to video a new song Toowoomba which they had debuted on Friday, to the parents of both Keir and Madeleine, who all hail from Toowoomba.

Yes, my hobby is taking videos of new Kate Miller-Heidke songs and both Kate and Keir like what I do.

Then The Finale of my Tour was in the quaint little village of Pomona, inland from Noosa. I arrived there at about 4pm. Pomona High Street reminded me of another lyric from Southern X Tattoo of “gonna file er up at the Servo” because as we arrived at a deserted street there was the Pomona Servo (closed of course) and as I said ‘The place is deserted” I realised the wooden building next to the Servo was indeed The Majestic Silent Movie Theatre where Kate was playing that night. It contained an old organ, fit and ready for Barry Morgan. I fantasised about Kate playing Psycho Killer on it. Then 5 hours later my fantasy was almost fulfilled as Kate performed Psycho Killer as an extra song in her Encore and dedicated it to me as I had now seen her 79 times! Kate confirmed she is now “equal with U2 in [my] Gig Diary”. Unfortunately my Gig Diary only began in 2006, when I decided I needed to monitor my Gigging and Kate’ing. I wish I’d started it just after I saw Roxy Music in 1974.

After 268 gigs by 3 artists and thousands of others by over 500 other artists I have no intention of stopping and my next Utopian goal is to combine my 80th Kate Miller-Heidke Show with my 10th consecutive Splendour in the Grass.

Don’t dream it, be it. Keep straight on till morning. I got the way. Thanks for Today.

Bring on Nightflight, Sarah and the video to a song on Nightflight  (the video is ready to launch), Ride this feeling.


1 Response to “Kate Miller-Marathon”

  1. April 14, 2012 at 3:24 am


    3.11 am,, for 7 hours I’ve listened to this amazing album, I’m pretty sure I’m word for word of each song. After all the work I have been privileged to listen to from the incomparable Kate Miller Heidke this album is a work of art. In Kate’s own words this album is a little darker and for me very thought provoking. Right now I have I’LL CHANGE YOUR MIND playing extraordinarily loud,, nothing is going to change my mind, this album is sensational. Hard to find favorites through the album as there is no fill on here, the consistency in depth of music is brilliant. I’m in love with SARAH each time I’ve listened it has given me goose bumps it’s a song that makes you think, IN THE DARK, wow, I think of my old Dad with his car in the drive and one day I’ll be there trying to star…t it.,,, NIGHTFLIGHT the title song, You’ll never jump on a plane again without thinking about those annoying announcements and that person next to you coughing all over you. Since March 2007 I’ve watched Kate grow along with her partner in crime Keir, this music team has endless talent and NIGHTFLIGHT is mind BLOWING!!

    I can highly recomend buying the deluxe 2 disc version as the extra treats are great; Hey Little Girl, Mother & Sun and Starlings are awesome songs in their own right with LIVE versions of IN THE DARK, THE DEVIL WEARS A SUIT and FIRE & IRON.

    Thank you for reading; I know you’ll enjoy this wonderful album as much as I have.

    Trevor Ryan

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